Japanese Makeup Culture

Begin Japanology is another show that I watch on NHK World, it is hosted by Peter Barakan. Begin Japanology, as stated on their website “explores many aspects of Japan, both traditional and contemporary: arts, sports, entertainment, food, technology, nature, etc. ”

This entry coincides with my previous post about Japanese skin care. To read my previous post and to watch the video from it’s companion program Japanology Plus, click here.

I stumbled upon this Youtube video right about the same time I saw Japanology Plus episode entitled “Quest for perfect Skin“.

This episode does not talk about Japanese cosmetics products, instead this episode from Begin Japanology talks about makeup in Japan : it’s history, its evolution and its social impact.

I found this episode to be very enlightening. As I have stated before, I am inspired by Japanese makeup culture.


Some key points of interest from this episode:

Lashes are a big thing is Japan. It’s true. I’ve seen it.

White black and red were the only colors used by women during the Japanese golden age. A color palette which is still used today.

As shown at the 9:45 minute mark, nose contouring has been in use since 1813 and there was even a makeup manual then. 3 volumes of makeup tricks!

Japanese women during the late 18th and early 19th centuries had found ways of making their makeup portable.

Nars Cosmetics Bento Box
Nars Cosmetics Bento Box

At the 13:06 minute mark, Peter Barakan is talking to Japanese Makeup Culture historian Takako Murata. They talk about how cosmetics were packaged and used during the 18th century. The light went “on” when Takako was discussing the fact that rouge was poured into a bowl and was turned up side down after use to keep the rouge from spoiling.

Years ago (circa 2010), Nars Cosmetics launched an extremely limited edition lip palette called “Bento Box “. Clearly inspired from traditional Japanese makeup, this palette had two small bowls of different shades of lip colors (Sakura [pink] and Maiko [red]). This set came with a kabuki lip brush.

Kabuki Brush Set bought in Tokyo
Kabuki Brush Set bought in Tokyo

Speaking of brushes, at the 16:58 minute mark, the episode starts to discuss the art of making makeup brushes. I can not believe one town supplies 80% of Japan’s brushes. I am not surprised though that many international cosmetics companies order their brushes from this Japanese company. I was quite surprised though to see in passing that some of my favorite makeup brushes to use were actually made there. I might have to visit Kumano in Hiroshima Prefecture one day to see the factory for my self.

The man featured here is Kazuo Takamoto, president of the premier brush company “Hakuhodo“.

I have managed to find an article about Kumano being the brush capital of Japan, you might enjoy this short reading here.


To learn more and to be inspired by Japanese makeup culture, enjoy the video below.











VMV Hypoallergenics Essence Skin-Saving Antiperspirant

Essence Skin-Saving Antiperspirant


My antiperspirant/deodorant of choice in helping me control the sweat on my pits all year round is VMV Hypoallergenics Essence Skin-Saving Antiperspirant.  This is a  liquid antiperspirant that comes in a spray bottle.

As stated in their website, this underarm care product offers intense protection from hyperhidrosis (extreme sweating) while preventing irritation, bumps, and underarm darkening.

Here’s how I use it:

I spray it on my underarms after I bathe in the evening. I do not wash my underarms with soap when I shower in the morning. The only time I spray them again after my morning shower is when I know I will be having a busy day, other wise, I skip it. I know you might think me weird for spraying deo at night before sleeping, but it is more effective in keeping my pits as dry as possible.

My regimen was confirmed effective when Allure Magazine ran an article detailing why putting on an antiperspirant/deodorant at night works. To read the story, here’s the link http://www.allure.com/story/antiperspirant-at-night .

I know it’s difficult to change old habits and processes. It does takes time and effort. It would be an easy transition once you’d have realized it does work.

One advantage of putting on an antiperspirant/deodorant at night  is: I do not get white stripes on my shirts. That’s because the antiperspirant/deodorant has dried thoroughly. I also get less staining/discoloration on my shirts because of this.

Speaking of stains, I am quite careful with my clothes because I don’t buy a lot of them. I always wash my clothes by hand.  Through the years of doing laundry I have come to despise antiperspirants/deodorants that came in stick form. They always leave product on the arm hole of the shirt. I get really annoyed by this because, product build up destroys a shirt by leaving skank, stains and an unpleasant odour. No matter how well you wash your clothes, the waxy product stays! Over time, the arm hole area of the shirt stiffens because of product build up! Eventually, they all fall into ruin.

After switching toVMV Hypoallergenics Essence Skin-Saving Antiperspirant in 2010, I have not had product build up, skank, or any form of unpleasant odour. Some yellow staining does occur (which are apparent on white shirts). This only happens when I wear my shirt when the product has not completely dried on my pits. This is caused by the ingredient Aluminium Chlorohydrate. Fear not, it’s easily removed when the shirt is washed using a gentle bleaching agent.

VMV Hypoallergenics Essence Skin-Saving Antiperspirant is unscented.  I love perfume and I am very passionate about my scent personality. Gone are the days when the scent of my deo intermingle with my perfume. Despite the fact that it is unscented, I do not develop any underarm odour. Glyceryl Laurate is its active ingridient that acts as an antibacterial agent that keeps underarm odour at bay.

I am one happy camper.


VMV Hypoallergenics Essence Skin-Saving Antiperspirant is available for delivery online and at all VMV Hypoallergenics Physical Stores.

This comes in a 150ml spray bottle.

If you are in the Philippines and want to get to know more about this product visit http://vmvhypoallergenics.ph/product/vmv-essence-skin-saving-antiperspirant. This retails for Php450.

For the rest of the world visit https://www.vmvhypoallergenics.com/essence-skin-saving-antiperspirant. This retails for $20.


Active Ingredients:

Aluminum Chlorhydrate.

Other Ingredients:

Alcohol, Aqua/Water/Eau, Glyceryl Laurate, Glycerin, PEG-12 Dimethicone.







Hillarie Parungao

I was lucky enough to have been booked for a job and my talent was Hillarie. Seen on the photo above was taken before the tape started rolling. That’s the hair stylist, Janet Saberon , Hillarie and I.

The first time I worked with Hillarie was when she was around 19 years old. That’s around 6 years ago. She was only a supporting character at that time. Now, I’m so proud of her achievements. Her light and bubbly character has never changed even after becoming Miss World Philippines 2015. She’s fun, talkative and full of energy!

Here are some of Hillarie’s Snapchat videos she took while we were prepping for the shoot.